E-gov fund slashed again

The House Appropriations Committee slashed the e-government fund again; this time to $1 million for fiscal 2004.

John Scofield, committee spokesman, said the panel did not think the administration justified the money, calling it a duplication of other efforts.

The funding was included in the House appropriations bill that was approved July 24 for the Transportation Department, the Treasury Department and independent agencies. It could, however, be restored, or even increased, by the Senate.

As in past years, the administration requested $45 million for the e-gov fund to kick-start crossagency initiatives. For the past three years, Congress appropriated only $5 million, forcing agencies and the Office of Management and Budget to pool their funds, which slows e-gov initiatives.

Mark Forman, administrator of the OMB Office of E-Government and Information Technology, has cited the fund's lack of full appropriations as a reason that e-government cannot move forward as quickly as officials hoped.

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